North Texas Children Among Those With Rare Polio-Like Illness

6 Minnesota kids diagnosed with rare, polio-like disease

The patients are now undergoing diagnostic procedures and treatments.

The condition, acute flaccid myelitis (AFM), was first identified in 2014, when there were 120 cases, NBC News reported.

The Minnesota Department of Health put out an alert last week, stating that six cases have been reported in children across that state over the past several weeks. Its origins are a mystery, but officials say a virus can cause some cases.

The mysterious illness that's paralyzing children is spreading across the United States, with cases popping up in both Chicago and Pittsburgh after initial reports from Minnesota.

This disease affects the nervous system, specifically the area of a person's spinal cord called gray matter, according to the CDC.

For reasons not fully understood, AFM affects mainly children. Potential causes can be viruses, environmental toxins and genetic disorders, the CDC said.

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"There's a sudden onset of weakness in the arm, leg, face, or the muscles that help us swallow and that we use to speak", says Dr. Amaran Moodley from the Blank Children's Hospital in Des Moines, Iowa.

"The CDC has acknowledged that 362 cases of AFM have been reported since 2014, indicating an increasing infection rate", Klobuchar wrote in the letter.

A 2-year-old girl from Batavia is facing a long, hard recovery after contracting a rare polio-like disease that has been reported in children across the United States.

The agency recommends staying up-to-date on vaccines, washing hands and protecting against mosquito bites as ways to prevent the disease.

"UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh is taking care of three children with suspected Acute Flaccid Myelitis".

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